HB V

is older than it's ever been and now it's even older

7/10/2001

Hitler and Jefferson


The Jefferson linkage I posted last time sparked the following IM conversation between me and Jeff, a portion of which I have reproduced with his permission.

Jeff says:
THere's a great comparison to be made between Jefferson and Hitler, ideologically speaking.
Jeff says:
That is a great link, one of the few honest ones about Tom Jeff and the tribes.
Nathan says:
yeah, he was a really kick ass guy, as long as you were in the right ethnicity/gender
Jeff says:
Just like Hitler.
Nathan says:
ugh. I don't know about that. my position is that you have to do with Jefferson what you have to do with any of the founding fathers -- take the philosophy and extend it to the greatest number of people; they had ideological blinders that prevented them seeing that people that didn't look like them were people, too.
Nathan says:
And don't say Just like Hitler again, dammit.
Nathan says:
I ain't gonna advocate fascism.
Nathan says:
I will advocate protected rights and delegated powers, tho.
Jeff says:
Just like ... Walther Darr.
Nathan says:
lord.
Nathan says:
[you] fuckin' pinko
Jeff says:
(A Nazi intellectual who was very influential with the party, and in the thought of Heidegger.)
Jeff says:
I'm very serious, actually. Think about it:
HITLER -- Organic farming will re-enchant the volk with the land.
JEFFERSON -- The U.S. should remain a nation of small farmers.
Jeff says:
HITLER -- Jews, Roma, blacks and homosexuals are not people.
JEFFERSON -- Blacks are subhuman; Indians are "merciless savages."
Jeff says:
HITLER -- The international bankers are out to get us.
JEFFERSON -- The national AND international bankers are out to get us.
Jeff says:
HITLER -- The volk need lebensraum ("living space"), thus we must expand our borders.
JEFFERSON -- We must purchase Lousiana and push Indians off it to achieve the ideal small farming society.
Nathan says:
HITLER -- I should take over all of Europe to gain Lebensraum and convert them to my ideology
JEFFERSON -- I should take over North America (you posted yours)
Jeff says:
There are differences, of course: Hitler gained power via pushing for a strong state, Jefferson gained power by positioning himself AGAINST a strong state (although he sure used the state's power), but ideologically, there were a lot of similarities.
Jeff says:
'Neither Spain nor Britain should be models of the German expansion, but the Nordics of North America, who had ruthlessly pushed aside an inferior race to win for themselves soil and territory for the future.' -- Hitler

(And I didn't even talk about Blood and Soil ideology, crucial to both Jefferson and Hitler's outlook)!


As explained in the link in question, Jefferson believed that Native Americans and those that didn’t want to be part of society had to be pushed to the wilderness to the west of what was then the United States. This idea of wilderness versus civilization is a dominant theme of American history, and still intrigues me. On one hand, my Social Contractarian philosophy presupposes that we have a choice and an input in determining what sort of government we have, or whether we get one at all. Back in the 18th and 19th centuries, if you didn’t want to live within the strictures of polite society, there were many different options available, from going into the fur trade, logging, exploring, and the high seas. Now, the average person who is unable to deal with civilization is most likely to just become a criminal. But even this minor quibble with the direction our nation has turned pales in comparison with the plight of the Native Americans.

The Indians. That quote by Hitler is chilling. What is the major difference between the concept of Manifest Destiny and Lebensraum? We are the beneficiaries of a genocidal program to dominate a continent. The impact on the legacy of our country is staggering; we who are the descendants of the executors of the policies that put us in place here. I understand that such positions are unpopular, and if some members of my family knew my full position on the matter, I could be disowned. I don’t just have a diagnosis, I have a solution in mind, at least for the Indians of the vast middle West. There is ample evidence that the 150 year old experiment of European farming the plains is a failure, in the sense that the plains are depopulating so quickly that many areas of the west have fewer people per square mile than they did in 1893, the year the frontier was declared closed. It’s time to let the ecosystem return to its natural state, to a Buffalo Commons, if you will, and let the Native Americans live the way they want to.

Funky disaster

Dating back to high school, I’ve always been fascinated by lesser-known disasters from the great Halifax Explosion of 1917 to the Quebec Bridge Collapse of 1907. The weirdest I have found yet has to be the Boston Molasses Disaster of 1919, where a giant tank of the stuff ruptured, sending a 30 foot high wall of molasses down streets, taking houses off their foundations, killing 21 people and generally making a big mess. It is said to this day you can smell molasses on a hot day. Great article here from 1965.

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